I am exceedingly troubled to read Kathy Sierra’s post from yesterday, “Death threats against bloggers are NOT ‘protected speech’ (why I cancelled my ETech presentations).”

I’m not entirely sure what to say. That doesn’t happen often.

I hope law enforcement officials can find and prosecute those behind these malicious and damaging virtual attacks.

Our continuing need for digital dialog and those standing guard on the iWall is dire indeed.

My prayers are with you, Kathy. What a sad thing it is to see digital tools used to incite fear and bludgeon the psyche of any human being. When that person is someone we know, even if our “knowing” is at an intellectual level due to the virtual window blogs provide into the mind and thinking of that person, our feeling of sadness can be even even more acute.

Andy Carvin and Robert Scoble are proposing a blogging fast in response. I’m attending a conference this week, so if I stop blogging I’m afraid I might stop learning 90% of the things I’m going to hear in the next few days… I’m also not sure if a blogging fast is a constructive response. What IS a constructive response to this, other than talking about the importance of safe digital social networking, digital citizenship, respect for others, etc. in our own localities? I’m not sure.

Via Stephanie Sandifer.

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3 Responses to Cyberbullying and death threats

  1. andy carvin says:

    Actually, I’m not sure if I was proposing a blog fast per se – more like ruminating on the idea. Frankly I don’t know what to do. The truth is, I can’t _not_ blog, especially because I’m under obligation to blog for PBS. And the more I think about it, the more I wonder if it makes sense to get lots of people blogging at once about the topic – a cyberbullying awareness day, if you will. For example, let’s say we asked everyone to post something on their blogs this Friday that raises awareness about cyberbullying – a personal experience with the problem, proposed solutions, whatever you think is appropriate – then have everyone tag it stopcyberbullying. And for everyone who doesn’t have a blog, commit to talking to someone – their children, their students, someone about cyberbullying and why it’s so dangerous. I wonder how many people we could get doing it. I wonder if it could make a difference.

  2. Bud Hunt says:

    I wonder if several “stop cyberbullying” Fridays makes sense (I think Andy’s about to propose one based on a Twitter he sent out this morning/last night). This issue is big, important, and we’ve got to take a solid stand.

    I’m in if Stop Cyberbullying Fridays makes sense. Perhaps even one post, from a recognized expert — Nancy Willard, maybe? — that we all echo could be a good start?

  3. andy carvin says:

    Been emailing with Nancy; looks like my idea roused her out of her vacation plans and she’s working on some stuff. Meanwhile, I posted an entry to my PBS blog fleshing out the idea further:


    So Friday is on. I’ve also set up a social network at http://stopcyberbullying.ning.com that can be used before, during and after this Friday to encourage collaboration regarding cyberbullying.

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